Italian fish and fennel soup



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1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 fennel bulb, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1½ cups (375ml) fish stock
1 cup (250ml) passata
1 bay leaf
200g barramundi fillet, skin and bones removed, cut into strips
200g john dory fillet, skin and bones removed, cut into strips
toasted Italian-style bread, to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


1. Heat oil in a large saucepan on medium. Pan-fry onion, fennel and garlic for 4 minutes, until soft. Add fish stock, 1½ cups water, passata and bay leaf. Bring to boil. Simmer (covered) for 15 minutes.

2. Remove bay leaf. Using a hand blender, blend tomato mixture until smooth. Strain through a sieve and return to saucepan.

3. Return to medium heat and season with salt to taste. Add fish and simmer for 2-3 minutes, until fish is cooked. Serve with a grinding of pepper and toast.